A new report shows the value of new construction in North Saanich totalled just over $52.1 million in 2020.
This figure appears in a staff report, which council unanimously accepted. The 2020 value marks an increase from 2019, when construction values totalled $33.2 million, the lowest figure for the last five years. The figures for 2020 fall in the middle compared to those five years. Construction values nearly totalled $69.5 million in 2017, ahead of 2018 with $55.2 million. Values for 2016 topped $33.3 million, just ahead of the 2019 figures.
Housing units in North Saanich rose by a gross total of 82 units in 2020, with 72 of those being single family homes. By comparison, housing units in North Saanich rose by 137 (gross) in 2017.
These figures appear against the backdrop of North Saanich reviewing its official community plan (OCP), with some voices accusing the municipality of being too deferential toward developers.
“What we see through this data here is that we have certainly had activity,” Mayor Geoff Orr said. “(But) this year isn’t really wildly different than others.”
The public also heard Orr call for ways to capture net changes to the housing stock as he reviewed what he described the four big projects (including Eaglehurst Homes) during the reporting period. These developments generally saw a handful of homes give way to a higher number of housing units with the Eaglehurst Homes development leading to a net gain of 94 units.
That sort of granular data will help inform the OCP review process, he said.
“Yes, there have been some significant additions through the projects I just mentioned,” he said. “But most of the other growth has been natural through our existing zoning and that is something, as council, we don’t have control over. That is a function of the community and the market.”
Staff said they would look into getting that kind of data.
Orr also lauded the increase in the number of new secondary suites, which rose to 24 in 2020 from 18 in 2019.
“It’s not a huge number, but it is a 25 per cent increase,” he said. “That is one of the areas where he hope to provide some a little bit more affordable accommodation.”
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